Slumber Party Massacre (2021) | Directed by Danishka Esterhazy
Colour | 86 Minutes
Written by Suzanne Keilly | Starring Hannah Gonera, Frances Sholto-Douglas, Mila Rayne
Remake of The Slumber Party Massacre (1982)
When I first heard about this film I thought it was a sequel to The Slumber Party Massacre (1982) (review). When I finally watched the rebooted Slumber Party Massacre, I was quite surprised but ultimately disappointed in this production.
The film initially opens with a retro flashback of what happened 25 years earlier. A group of teenage girls travel to a cabin in the woods for a slumber party. They are having the time of their lives eating pizza, guzzling beers, you know, just the usual stuff, when the jealous boyfriend shows up unexpectedly, confronting his girlfriend.
Unknowingly, driller killer Russ Thorn (Rob van Vuuren) lurks outside, attacking and killing the girls one by one, leaving the final girl Trish (Masali Baduza) to fight him with his own power tool. She walks away! Nothing new under the sun right? Wrong!!!
Three decades later, Adult Trish’s (Schelaine Bennett) daughter, Dana (Hannah Gonera), has made plans to go into the same woods with her friends, Maeve (Frances Sholto-Douglas), Breanie (Alex McGregor), Ashley (Reze-Tiana Wessels), and Alix (Mila Rayne). At first, as this new group of teenagers begin to have some fun together partying, it appears that history will repeat itself, but we soon find out that the girls are prepared to hunt and kill!
Like the original Slumber Party Massacre movies, this remake of sorts deals with role-reversals. All the strong, typically male roles are undertaken by females, leaving the men as the weaker sex. This really doesn’t help the tone of this film! Scenes like the guys having an exotic pillow fight or the Psycho-inspired shower scene are played for laughs, but as a female I just rolled my eyes watching these scenes and wondered why I just didn’t get up, turn it off and leave the room to do something really important like taking the trash out.
The horror and comedy in Slumber Party Massacre were not clearly defined… Not enough scares, nor enough laughs. I also feel the biggest mistake, in both the remake and original movie, was in revealing the identity of the killer too early, leaving no surprises for the audience. The twisted ending and various easter eggs from the franchise (like including the electric guitar from Slumber Party Massacre II) held my interest, but it didn’t save the remake from being boring.
I was hoping that the 2021 version would have some redeeming qualities that improved upon the original 1982 production, but it failed to do so. Remakes should be as good as the original and improve on past failings. Unfortunately many fall short of this, including Slumber Party Massacre. This is only my opinion. If you like this remake or the original (or both!), that’s fine. We all have our own taste in horror movies!
Slumber Party Massacre is now showing on syfy.com